Thursday, July 30, 2009

Didn't I have your permission? I'm sorry.

So my hair is amazingly straight. My hair has never been this straight in my entire life. Ever. And so far I've been REALLY good about not putting it behind my ears. I haven't done it by accident ONCE. All of the women that I've seen are saying "wow your hair is so great, I can't belive it, did they cut it, too?" (No. It hasn't been cut. You just can't see how layered my hair is on a normal basis) Gene LOVED it. He really likes straight hair (mainly because loves hair. and when my hair is curly, he is not allowed to touch it) and couldn't get over how different it looks.

One man I work with told me that he barely recognized me with my hair this straight. I also had my head bent over a book and my hair was covering my face, but it's generally not as sleek as it is at the moment.

But the killer? Another man I work with... who has been up my butt about my getting back into acting every. day. doesn't know when to stop talking. First of all, about the acting thing, he says things like "you're so good at it." How would you know? You've NEVER seen me act. Ever. You have no idea if I'm a good actor or not. Second of all, he basically told me that my hair looked like shit and it was better before when it had body and that he doesn't know why women feel the need to want what they don't have.

I'm not one of those "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all" people, but seriously? Don't go out of your way to tell me my hair sucks. The exact words he used were "Oh, going grunge now, are we?" Um. No. I'm not "grunge" it's just straight. This is not dissimilar to the time when one of my managers asked me if I frequented "The Grange" which is a goth club. Because I colored my hair to its natural color, instead of the bright red highlights that I had. Why do these men I work with feel the need to stick their nose in when it comes to MY HAIR?

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Give me booze, or give me death.

It's amazing what a difference three years makes. I've lived in my new state for three years, and I haven't visited my college in that long. Why I decided on a whim to drive 90 minutes and pay (way too much) to see Shakespeare at my college I don't know. I had all these grandiose plans. My friend and I had packed a nice dinner (sandwiches, pudding, brownies, cheezits. We're so healthy) and we were going to stop by the liquor store that's around the corner from school, get a chilled bottle of white, and be on our merry way.

I managed to remember how to get there, which is actually pretty amazing because I haven't done the drive even a little in three years. We start to drive to the theatre, when I realize that we didn't stop at the liquor store. So we had to go back out. The road we need is totally destroyed... and I can't figure out how to get into the shopping center. When we finally do get in... we walk up to the liquor store (which is next to a kind of dirty, but very delicious pizza joint) and it's EMPTY. But it has a sign that says something like "Don't Mind our Appearance... Moving to the Promenade on August 15." Um. It's July. Not August. So...where is the wine?

We go across the street to the other shopping center (literally right across the street from one another. And they both have grocery stores in them. Oh, and in this state you can't by beer/wine in a grocery store. Need to go to liquor store for wine/liquor, and a state store for beer. It's backwards). The manager of the Giant is outside, so I say um...where's the liquor store that was RIGHT THERE? So then he tells me of this magical promenade that I've never been to because I haven't been here in three years. He explains how to get me the wrong names for roads, and sends me on my merry way. I find it by accident, because I had no idea where I was going and turned too early I think, and this thing is flipping huge. There are seriously 50 stores.... and they're all storefronts. It's like a mall turned inside-out. So I drive all over this freaking thing trying to find some damn wine (and at this point, I'm a little miffed because the show starts in 5 minutes and we're 15 minutes away)

Seriously. I looked everywhere for this damn store. I was getting a little more than annoyed... there's no map anywhere of what is where... and if I wasn't in a hurry, I'd totally browse in some of the shops (especially the boutique cosmetics store! yay!) but I didn't get to enjoy cute little boutiquey shops. I needed booze. So we decide to just leave and get soda or something, when I realize there's one little tiny strip that we ignored when we first came in. Of course that's where the liquor store is. If I had turned left instead of going straight, I would have saved myself 10 minutes. So we get our booze, and we get to the theatre at 6:30...the show started at 6.

Pulling into the theatre, I realize that the parking lot is empty, and none of the tables are set up for the Green Show. Which starts at 7...not 6. Whoops. At least I have booze. (it was good, too. I just wish I remembered what it was called.)

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Why must I torture myself?

I love theatre, I really do... but whenever I see a show, especially a good one with a great cast, I miss it so much and then I get sad. Because right now I just can't do theatre even locally. I need both of my jobs too much, and I'm not in a place where I can let my second job go so that I can do a show for two weeks.

Right on the heels of seeing an amazing show in NYC, I'm going up to my college today. My school houses a Shakespeare Festival... and I'm a big ol' Shakespeare nerd. Shakespeare acting and text and everything was a big part of my education, because of the Shakespeare Festival. There is an acting internship program that is only available to students of the acting program I went through. Granted, I was never part of it... because I wasn't a "super actor" according to a certain someone (ahem!) but oh well. I only auditioned twice. My freshman year I skipped it, because I was too intimidated. My sophomore year I was called back, but I wasn't that good. My junior year I rocked it. And I didn't get called back at all, and was crushed. So my senior year, I didn't audition. And THREE of my professors pulled me aside and said "We really think you should reconsider auditioning for the festival this summer." Too bad. I had a job already in place (the job that became my fulltime job at the radio station) so I really think that I made the right decision. Besides, if I auditioned, it wasn't like they were going to give me an actual role. I was going to be in the chorus of one thing or another.

I'm very excited to go up and see what the festival is like this summer. There is an outdoor show everyday at 6pm that is all of the acting interns. It's called The Green Show and it's a lot of Shakespeare Improv and audience participation and embarassment. It's GREAT. And then a very good friend of mine is playing Demetrius in A Midsummer Nights' Dream, which happens to be one of my favorite Shakespeare plays. My favorite is Twelfth Night, then the Scottish play, then Midsummer. The only Shakespeare play that I've ever read and not liked was Henry II. Hated that play. It could have been the class I had to read it for, but it holds some bad bad memories.

Friday, July 24, 2009

I killed the boss. You don't think they're not going to fire me for that!?

Yesterday was the best day ever. Okay, that might be a slight exaggeration, but not by much. My best friend bought us tickets to go see 9 to 5 on Broadway for my birthday. And I do have to admit that when I first heard last year that 9 to 5 was coming to Broadway, I was not a happy camper. I was skeptical... because I noticed a trend that all of these movies keep becoming musicals (Hairspray--which I love, Shrek--which I don't really know, American Psycho--which I'm still really REALLY skeptical about, etc. etc). But I admitted that I was wrong. I listened to the music for 9 to 5, and fell in love with the song "Get Out and Stay Out" which Judy sings at the end of Act 2. Dolly Parton really is a musical genius. (I heart Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. I really really do. I think it's amazing.)

I was very lucky to still see the original cast... and I don't think that's ever happened to me before. I always see it a few years later when the leads have been turned around a few times. But I was super lucky to see Allison Janney, Megan Hilty, and Stephanie Block. These three ladies are absolutely incredible. Allison Janney is IMHO one of the funneist women in show business. I fell in love with her at "She's got a big ass then...she's got a big ass now" in Drop Dead Gorgeous. And if you haven't seen that movie, rent it now. It's HILARIOUS.

Megan Hilty is one of my favorite musical theatre actors. She was my favorite Galinda in Wicked because she has this amazing sense for comedy. She's definitely not afraid to look stupid... which is so important in comedy. Her accent was also perfect. If you closed your eyes, you'd swear it was Dolly Parton onstage. And Stephanie Block breaks my heart. I just wanted to run up there and give her a big hug. I SOBBED during "Get Out and Stay Out." It's definitely my favorite number. They're all great songs... but this one is so incredibly moving. And Stephanie Block totally hits it out of the park.

I'd have to say that my favorite part of the show was watching these women's faces. You can just tell that they're having the time of their lives onstage. During the number when Allison Janney's character dreams about being CEO of the company, she was just beaming. I could also tell that they're getting to that point in a show where you do your own thing? Stephanie Block had a line in the show that I can't imagine was in the script. When they're about to kidnap their boss... she says to him "No good deed goes unpunished" which is hilarious since she went from playing Elphaba in Wicked to playing Judy in 9 to 5. I cracked up... and a few other people got the joke, too. But it's the little things like that that make me love (and miss...) live theatre.

One of my favorite moments of the day, though, was not during the show. We had horrible horrible weather... it rained THE WHOLE TIME and my pants were soaking wet. And of course I wore dark jeans.. so they were sticking to me. Gross. But I'm walking through Times Square not paying attention to anything because I'm wet and slightly cranky when I hear someone shout my first and last name. Interesting thing to hear in Times Square. One of my friends from college was working in Times Square handing out flyers for tickets to a musical. It doesn't surprise me that I ran into someone from college..because MOST of my friends live in New York, but I don't expect to hear my name shouted in Times Square.

We also had an amazing dinner before the show. If you're looking for a great place to eat in New York City, walk a few blocks to 9th Ave and pick something there. There are so many great restaurants on 9th. We went to a place called Frangolino. Great food. Really good calimari, and really really good pinot noir.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

You mean... I don't have to pay for it? Yes, please.

My jobs are probably my largest source of stress in my life... but I put up with them because sometimes? they're awesome. I get to meet all kinds of awesome people with the radio station, plus some client perks (like the laser hair removal). And since I work in the prestige department of a makeup store, I get a lot of free makeup. Always good. I have 3 mascaras right now. Did not buy a single one.

Yesterday our salon manager (Oh yeah, we have a salon, too) asked me if I'd do a Keratin treatment. I have pretty wavy/curly hair. I usually straighten it with a flat iron, which isn't good for it but I don't care. Rarely do I wear it curly. What the Keratin treatment does is that it smooths everything out basically? It's a pure protein treatment (Keratin is the protein that is in our hair already) at least from what I understand. I'm not a stylist by any means. But I do know that it's safe for your hair... and that it is not by any means a chemical straigtener. I wouldn't do that to my hair. But since we only just started doing Keratin treatments, they have to do a few services on employees free of charge. So I'm getting a $300 service for free! I'm super excited.

The only weird part? For three days following the treatment... I cannot get my hair wet, I cannot put it back or clip it up, and I cannot even put it behind my ear. And I have to use a special shampoo: PureOlogy. But I'm going to have amazing straight hair for SIX MONTHS! I'm so excited... I can't wait until next Wednesday to have it done. I already have the day off from the station, so I figured that's the perfect time to get the treatment!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

You know you just graduated from high school when...

Dear Teenagers in the greater Philadelphia area,

It's time that someone taught you about responsibility. Or at least about taking on responsibility in your life. I'm sure that by now you've realized that at some point soon (especially if you're getting to the middle of your college career, or are approaching your college career) you need to get a job. Ideally one that could blossom into a career. There are a few things that you need to consider before going on on the job hunt.

1. Wear appropriate clothing. A cut off T-shirt from American Eagle and sweaty hair is not approapriate "I'm a responsibile human being, please hire me" attire. Neither are flip-flips, board shorts, or any other summer clothing. I know it's hot out because it's the middle of July, but dress nicely. Even khakis and a polo would be far better than what I saw you wearing today.

2. Be polite. Walking up to a receptionist desk while smirking, leaning over the desk, and then pronouncing, "We want jobs" is not okay. Not even a little bit. Saying "We want jobs" makes you sound like the missing link. Not to mention it really doesn't want anyone jump up and down and say "OH THANK GOD YOU'RE HERE! YOU CAN START TODAY!" We especially don't want you to follow with, "We don't care what the job is. We'll clean your floors." That just makes you sound really really desperate.

3. Know your boundaries. Asking the person sitting at the receptionist desk a lot of questions about her personal life is not acceptable. In fact, it's kind of creepy.

4. Persistence is key, but let's not go overboard. Asking for the number of a business is a step in the right direction. But don't call five minutes after leaving and then say the same "I want a job" demand. I really think it's time that you spoke to either your parents or your school counselor, or both, about appropriate business actions. Since you're so desperate for jobs (and want to clean floors apparently...) might I suggest retail? Retail is generally always hiring. Also, some free advice... when someone says that their business is in a hiring freeze, that means they can't hire anyone. At all. For anything. We aren't being rude, it's just the way that it is. No reason to throw a temper tantrum.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Rabid Reading

It always surprises me when people read slow. Gene reads ridiculously slow. It took him two years to finish a Mario Puzo novel. I, on the other hand, often finish books in one sitting.

I'm mostly addicted to series books... because I love to see how characters develop over time and I usually hate to see the story end. So when I find a series that I like a lot (i.e. Harry Potter series, Outlander series, Twilight series, Stephanie Plum series) I become a little crazed with the reading. Outlander (which is BIG) I read in about three days. And didn't stop reading until I had finished all of the books that were out at the time.

So when I finally picked up the Southern Vampire Mysteries/Sookie Stackhouse novels, I knew it was going to be bad. Gene was gone for three days so I was by myself... and it was either read a lot or watch a lot of The Closer. I picked reading. It took me exactly one week (started last Tuesday, finished last night) to read all nine books that are out.

And now that I sped through all of them... I want to do it again. Maybe not the first one (especially since I just finished watching the first season of True Blood which is essentially the first book) but I want to reread them all again. And maybe a bit slower. I want to see if I pick up on anything... any hints.

Am I the only one who reads this way? I get comments about how "crazy" I am, or how "worried" people are about me when I get myself sucked into books like this... but I like to get sucked in. Last night, Gene kept trying to interrupt a VERY important part of the book (I HAD BEEN WAITING FIVE WHOLE BOOKS FOR THAT MOMENT. FIVE BOOKS!!!) and was upset that I chose vampire yumminess over helping him upload New Orleans pictures on facebook. (clearly I made the right decision...)

But in all seriousness... please tell me someone else reads like me. And reads multiple books in one day. Because for a while I was reading two books a day. I probably could have finished all nine in three days if I didn't have to work.

Friday, July 10, 2009

There's a new love in town

We all know that I am (just a little) obsessed with Twilight. LURVE the books. Movie was hilarious (not sure it was supposed to be...) but LURVE the books. And Edward Cullen is the vampire for me.

Until I met Eric Northman.

(That's right, Tia. Edward is all yours.)

On Tuesday, I bought the first two books in the Southern Vampire Mysteries...aka the Sookie Stackhouse Novels... aka those books that the HBO show True Blood is based on. Wednesday I had finished both books. Thursday, now in vampire withdrawl, I went to Borders and bought books 3-8 (9 just came out, but it's in hardback... and the rest that I own are in paperback... and if I'm owning a set of books, they all need to be the same size). Thursday afternoon I started book 3 while covering the receptionist desk... finished it when I got home.... started reading book 4... and finished that a few hours later.

I'm seriously a reading fiend. When I become this sucked in, nothing can be done. It's a good thing Gene is away for a few days. He gets a little insecure and upset when I ignore him for fictional men. First came Jamie Fraser, the hot Scotsman from the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon (LOVE! READ IT!). Then came Edward Cullen. And now it's Eric Northman. nom. Tall, blond, Viking vampire? Yes, please.

I actually left book 5 at home today (even though I do need to play receptionist again). And I think I might not read the rest of it until Saturday. Maybe. We'll see. I may not have the strength to wait until tomorrow. But seriously... these books are amazing. The show is pretty good, too.... and I watched the first season before I read the books. They're very different. The books only follow Sookie Stackhouse, and the show follows a lot more than that. It goes into more detail into what's happening around Sookie that she's not paying attention to because she's preoccupied with Vampire Bill (Eric is Bill's boss, so to speak). I highly recommend both.

I may have all nine (cuz I'll get it somewhere. I won't buy it until it's in paperback.. but I'll read it somehow) finished by Sunday. Or at least a week from today.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

A harrowing tale

I was on ravelry today (aka facebook for knitters/crocheters) and was reminded about something that I haven't thought about in a long time. Ghosts.

My parents used to own this restaurant...and it was haunted. It was 1997... I was going into the 8th grade, and I had to read The Diary of Anne Frank and Farewell to Manzanar for summer reading. I was reading Anne Frank upstairs in the musty apartments above the dining rooms, when I started smelling flowers. I thought my mother had bought a candle or something. Then a little while later, my mother and I are staining and schlacking the tables in one of the dining rooms. Tables we were working on were in the middle, all finished tables got moved to the wall. All of a sudden, the both of us are wiping cobwebs (or what felt like cobwebs) from our faces...except we're in the middle of the room.

It wasn't until later that week when a woman who said she used to work for the restaurant under the previous owner (who had abandoned the building in like 1978 and you could tell) stopped by and asked us, "Have you met the ghost yet?" She told us this story about when she used to close the restaurant, and one night her 3 yr old son was with her. He wasn't allowed to go up and down stairs, and he was upstairs in a playpen in the apartments (there were two full apartments upstairs. we used them for offices and storage). She went to go and get her son, except that he was standing right next to her. When she scolded him for coming downstairs alone he replied, "but I wasn't alone. The nice lady with the pretty blue dress held my hand all the way down."

Then we started to notice other strange things.

Like when my father was moving wood from one side of the building to another, and he was going through this one doorway between the two small dining rooms. The first time, there was a chair blocking his way. He put down the wood, moved the chair, and kept going. When he came by a second time... the same thing happened. And it happened a third time. The third time, he said outloud "I am picking up and moving the chair. If this chair is here when I come back... I am going to have a heart attack." It wasn't there the fourth time. And everyone else who was in the building that day was working on the bar... which was pretty separate from where my father was.

Another occasion... my dad was planning the menu with our head chef. At the time, they were the only people with keys. My dad had bought cookies from the grocery store across the street (you know, the ones from the bakery in the plain clear containers?) and there were a few left. Both my dad and the chef thought about taking the cookies home, but then decided to leave them for breakfast in the morning. My dad left last... and he showed up the next day first. The cookies were not in the dining room where they left them. They were in the kitchen on the counter... and the container was empty. And closed. And there were no crumbs anywhere, so it was impossible that it was an animal.

She also liked to play "hide the wine." We had different people dropping bottles of wine off for my parents to taste so that they'd put their wine on the menu. This particular day, we had few contractors but I think they were mostly outside. And my aunt had come to visit (she's a nun. It's not important to the story, but she is). My parents and my aunt were in the small dining room with the fireplace when my dad said "Oh...THERE it is!" and he picked up a glass of red wine from inside the fireplace. Apparently, hours earlier, one of the bottles was open and missing a glass of wine. My parents hadn't poured it... and neither had my aunt the nun. And the contractors were outside. And the glass of wine wasn't in the fireplace when my dad found the no longer full bottle on top of the mantle. The ghost apparently just loves cookies and red wine.

We did discover (or rather, my mom discovered) the ghosts name... Susanna Levan Kemp. Her father was the original owner of the restaurant 250+ years ago when it was the Levan Inn. Her husband inherited it, and it became the Kemp Hotel. Her story is actually published in one of those "Ghosts of Eastern Pennsylvania" books. I'm pretty sure it was volume 3, but I'm not 100% positive.

Has anyone else experienced anything like this? I have others, too, but this one is I think the best one. With the most incidents.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Funny how things change...

This weekend (and by weekend, I mean Monday.. but I was on vacation, so it was still my weekend) I got to reconnect with someone I've been friends with for over ten years (and when we figured that out... we simultaneously groaned OH MY GOD WE'RE SO OLD). She always moves far away. She went to undergrad in Florida... and grad school in D.C. where she's been living for the past few years, and while D.C. is much closer than Florida (to me anyway) we still don't see each other quite as often as we'd like.

But getting together with her really made me realize how much I missed her. It's also made me realize how much we've both changed. We used to have this routine in the summers. Go swimming in her pool, go to the mall, eat at Friendly's, go to VS and absolutely buy the 5 for $25 underwear, then go back into pool, turn on hot tub, watch silly movies. Yesterday, however, we went into the pool (and now I'm SO sunburnt), went to the mall... realized Friendly's no longer exists (the horror!), got ice cream at Cold Stone Creamery instead, went to VS... and hated everything in there, and then we parted ways. I had to get home to make dinner. It was so funny because we're still the same basic people, and our friendship still works, but we've definitely changed.

When we drove to the mall, we took the long way (to avoid tolls... I didn't have easy pass with me) and went by this road that we used to go on in high school. The road is supposedly haunted, and there's supposed to be this coven that does all kinds of weird stuff. Now... I studied Wicca for a while (found it fascinating) and I also read Tarot, and this "haunted road" was just a road. But that didn't mean that it didn't scare the bejesus out of me. And when we crossed over it... it just brought me right back to all of the stupid shit I did in high school. The one night we did go there... we did get run off of the road and someone followed us for about 2 miles until we turn onto a different road, hence the terrified part.

The whole day just had me really missing those friendships that I had in high school. Out of all of the people I was close to, I only talk to two people. The friend I hung out with, and my best friend that I've known since I was 6. That's it. All of these friendships that I thought I'd have forever... gone. And I know that I'm better off... all of the friendships I have now are really strong. They're the people I'd call if I needed to hide the body, you know? The other people would say they'd help me, but call the police so that when I went to pick my friend up, the cops would be waiting. But that still doesn't mean that I don't sometimes miss those people... and wish that they could have been better friends.

Also, unrelated, I've almost finished watching season 1 of True Blood... DAMN that show is good. And for my lunch today, I'm going to Borders and I'm going to buy the first book. I do love me some vampires. No vampire can come close in my book to Edward Cullen, but Sookie seems way more interesting than whiny Bella Swan. Maybe if Sookie and Edward got together...that would be awesome.